Q: When should a girl to begin shaving her legs?

A: Different girls are ready for shaving their legs at different times.  Some girls now enter puberty at the age of 8 or 9 and have breast development and menstrual cycles. The quality of body hair changes when a person enters puberty and can be more noticable (coarser and thicker) than when she was younger. This may lead younger children to be uncomfortable around their peers and create a desire to start shaving.

Talk to your daughter to see where the desire to begin shaving is coming from (friends, TV, bullies) and make sure that she is aware it is something that needs to be done on a regular basis once you start.  Waiting a little longer may be the better option, but good shaving technique should be taught before a tween or teen (12-14 years old) is given a razor.  Girls this age will more likely have the maturity to avoid cutting skin (which can lead to bleeding and infection) when shaving.

Answered by Dr. Carrie M. Brown


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